By Tonya Garcia, MarketWatch
Walmart Inc., CVS Health Corp. and Lowe’s Cos. are among the retailers that have new face covering requirements for customers that go into effect nationwide on Monday.
Walmart’s /zigman2/quotes/207374728/composite WMT -1.37% face covering requirement applies to all U.S. stores and Sam’s Club warehouses. Face coverings were already required at 65% of locations in cities and towns where there was a face covering government mandate.
The company has more than 5,000 stores and clubs in the U.S.
Customers can expect to see signs about the new policy and workers have been trained on new protocols, according to a blog post by Dacona Smith, chief operating officer of Walmart U.S., and Lance de la Rosa, chief operating officer of Sam’s Club.
Walmart has also created a new role, health ambassador, who will receive special training to alert customers of the rule and find ways to resolve issues that arise from those who refuse to wear a mask or cannot wear one.
Sam’s Club will provide a mask to members who don’t have one at no charge.
All stores will also have a single entrance to ensure consistency.
“We know some people have differing opinions on this topic. We also recognize the role we can play to help protect the health and well-being of the communities we serve by following the evolving guidance of health officials like the CDC,” the blog post said.
CVS Health Corp. /zigman2/quotes/209664499/composite CVS +1.42% tweeted the launch of its face covering requirement.
Lowe’s /zigman2/quotes/205563664/composite LOW +0.70% announced the requirement alongside its home improvement retail competitor Home Depot Inc. /zigman2/quotes/208081807/composite HD +2.59% last week. Home Depot will launch its new policy on Wednesday.
Home Depot has assigned “social distancing captains” as well as store associates to hand out complimentary masks. Lowe’s will also make masks available for free.
For many retailers, an alternative presented for customers who choose not to wear a mask while in the store is to shop online with purchases delivered at home or made available through the retailer’s buy-online-pickup-in-store capability.
Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. /zigman2/quotes/209801102/composite BBBY -5.30% said Friday that its mask policy will be in effect by July 24 and include the flagship store brand and others such as Cost Plus World Market and Buybuy Baby.
Target Corp. /zigman2/quotes/207799045/composite TGT -1.36% said Thursday that it will require all customers to wear face coverings at its stores starting August 1, except for those with underlying conditions and young children. The retailer already requires face coverings at more than 80% of its stores.